State: No to grant for city baseball field — this time

The city was not among those receiving any of $100 million in state Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program grants from the office of budget in Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration in the most recent award cycle.

That means a $1.2 million grant request by the city to pay for replacement of seats at the stadium remains on hold, according to Mayor Gabriel J. Campana, who spoke before the Bowman Field Commission on Monday.

“The preliminary news from our economic development consultant was not positive,” Campana said.

“For the stadium to continue to the meet the needs of the Williamsport Crosscutters’ minor league baseball team, and other community institutions, various renovations are needed,” he said.

Jason Fitzgerald, president of Penn Strategies, the city’s economic development consulting firm, said the governor’s office will make announcements on a rolling basis throughout the end of the year.

“Most of the announcements that were made are significant job generators,” Fitzgerald said.

The city is hopeful it will receive some or all of the grant request to pay for box and general admission seating preparation, safety modifications, and installation, and perimeter and interior outfield fence replacement and video boards, said Lou Hunsinger Jr., commission chairman.

Among the renovations at the stadium ongoing include a $2.3 million grandstand deck addition to be funded with bond financing provided by the city, according to William E. Nichols Jr., city finance director.

“We’re still alive,” Nichols said of the grant application. He said state Sen. Gene Yaw, R-Loyalsock Township, and state Rep. Jeff Wheeland, R-Loyalsock Township, are working on behalf of the city toward getting the grant.

“We should know about the next round of grants in December,” Nichols said.